Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. IV:Early Church Fathers Index Previous Next
Writings in Connection with the Donatist Controversy.: Chapter 14
Chapter 14.—15. Furthermore, if I have obtained from you, in accordance with my earnest endeavors, that, laying aside from your minds all prejudice of party, you should be impartial judges between Petilianus and myself, I will show to you that he has not replied to what I wrote, that you may understand that he has been compelled by lack of truth to abandon the dispute, and also see what revilings he has allowed himself to utter against the man who so conducted it that he had no reply to make. And yet what I am going to say displays itself with such manifest clearness, that, even though your minds were estranged from me by party prejudice and personal hatred, yet, if you would only read what is written on both sides, you could not but confess among yourselves, in your inmost hearts, that I have spoken truth.
16. For, in replying to the former part of his writings, which then alone had come into my hands, without taking any notice of his wordy and sacrilegious revilings, where he says, "Let those men cast in our teeth our twice-repeated baptism, who, under the name of baptism, have polluted their souls with a guilty washing; whom I hold to be so obscene that no manner of filth is less clean than they; whose lot it has been, by a perversion of cleanliness, to be defiled by the water wherein they washed;" I thought that what follows was worthy of discussion and refutation, where he says, "For what we look for is the conscience of the giver, that the conscience of the recipient may thereby be cleansed;" and I asked what means were to be found for cleansing one who receives baptism when the conscience of the giver is polluted, without the knowledge of him who is to receive the sacrament at his hands. 2367
See above, Book I. c. 1, 2.
Next: Chapter 15
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